Kati's story....the first in the "My Story" series....

 

Kati....who has lived in Hawaii for the past 3 years....

My shoot with Joelle Watt...

when I think back so many emotions run through my head.

Do you ever wake up and put your warm feet on the cold morning floor only to feel the warm breathe leave your body as you gasp feeling shocked and breathless? 

That's how I felt when I saw my pictures, awake, refreshed, breathless.

It had been a bit of a rough year and a rough Christmas when my very best friend and dear sweet brother called me. I was fighting back tears entirely overwhelmed and homesick as I scrubbed dishes and cooked Christmas dinner for those who are my friends at my base a million miles away from home, knowing I couldn't see my family that day and if tomorrow was bad, my birthday the next day would be worse. Much to my surprise my sweet brother called and wished me a merry Christmas and asked how much room I had in my suitcase....He paused for quite awhile and told me he'd just tell me the surprise he and his sweet wife sherri were getting me for my birthday:

a photoshoot with Joelle! Instant tears, squealing, running around the kitchen shrieking and crying. To say I was excited is a desperate underestimation. 

-Now back to the shoot.

My parents named me  Katelyn.  

Katelyn means pure.  

If there is anything I have been in life, it's not that.

I tried as hard to be exactly the opposite, and God let me run till I tired out...devastated and alone... because of my choices.  A million miles away from home and in my devastation, He calmly called to me.

He welcomed the prodigal.   

From then I've been slowly and surely growing and leaning on Him.

That has brought an understanding of how strength can be perfectly encompassed in a shell of weakness and how beauty is found in Him and not anything else.

To see myself through others' eyes is something special but to see myself through the eyes and lens of Joelle was unlike anything else.

God has spent a long time showing me my strength and worth that is found in Him... and that's something He'll continue to show me the rest of my life.

My mom and I talk almost every day which is truly a testament to God's changing power in my life. It's funny how someone I so entirely resented and disdained is now my best friend and one of my biggest role models.

My momma has told me since I got saved from my wildness and complete life of sinfulness that I'm a trophy of God's grace;

How undeniably beautiful is it to catch that strength and that knowledge of God's grace through the lens of Joelle's camera.

My photoshoot with Joelle was incredible.

Every woman should be able to see their strength, their beautify, their unadultured, raw womanhood perfectly portrayed in a picture... 

this was my session with Joelle Watt. 

-Kati

joelle's read:

it's odd first, to comment on what somebody has written to you about their life, their perception of their shoot, and lastly, how they ended up feeling.  

the other oddity- this is my brother in law's STUNNING sister, and his very best friend.

so my take...in honesty...and through my lens...

i knew gorgeous kati for many years...and of the struggles she so humbly opens her heart about.

what i did not know, was the strength, the humble heart, the depth, and the change in her. 

to see this incredible woman in front of my camera...confidant in every way, because of who only Jesus helped her to become, was like riding the best smoothest roller coaster.  

the emotions, truths, beauty, pictures, honesty, and FAITH, brought us to a point that, please don't think this is weird...we were one as we shot these images.  

 

kati girl...strong, cliff jumping, fearless, confident, humble kati....

I LOVE YOU

even more, i LOVE the story HE has written for you, and to have even a tiny part in it.

-xoxoox

joelle